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OCPL Mantis-CAM!



What you are viewing above is a live stream feed of our young mantises, Finbar (Finn) and Phaedra. You might not see too much movement immediately, but if you have patience and wait a bit, you might notice a cricket scuttle by, our mantis expanding and contracting its abdomen, or even doing a little dance. You might even be lucky enough to catch our mantis feeding (that's what the crickets are for) or molting—how cool is that! 

Our Mantis-CAM  and habitats are now on display inside the main entrance of Library.  Guests and patrons can come and see our growing mantises in person during regular library hours. Eventually, the mantises will move into a fully-functioning vivarium (self-sustaining ecosystem).

The Mantis-CAM will continue to live stream 24-hours a day, allowing anybody anywhere to check in on our mantises anytime! Check in often and watch our mantises grow with us, or stop by the Library to see them in person. 

Update: Having completed her final molt (08-28-2021), Phaedra is now a full grown adult with wings!

Update (08-28-2021): We've learned that Finbar is actually a male of the California Mantis species! Here he is after his latest molt. Note the exoskeleton and the tell-tale curve to his abdomen.


Mantis 2 has molted!

June 25, 8:56 am update: One of our mantises molted!

June 25, 3:33 pm update: Our second mantis has molted.


We caught the very last of our second mantis molting on the afternoon of June 25. This video is sped up 4x and condenses the hour-long final push of our green mantis freeing her abdomen from her previous exoskeleton into a little less than two minutes.


Now that our mantis nymphs have complete their first molt, we are beginning to socialize them to get them used to and comfortable with people. 

Just look a how cute Brownie, aka Chill Jill is! We can hardly stand it. What would you name her? Send us your suggestions through the online naming form.

Watch our LUNCH WITH BOOKS: The World of the Mantis

Lunch With Books, Tuesday, July 6 at noon - The World of MantisOCPL staff member Nayt Knapp is an insect enthusiast. Specifically, he is a big fan of the order Mantodea, better known as Mantises. The order features more than 2,400 species living all over the globe in temperate zones. Most people are familiar with the triangular heads, alien-like eyes, long slender bodies, long folded arms, and green hue of the ambush predator commonly known as the “praying mantis.” These are typically of the European and Chinese varieties common in the United States, which are actually invasive species. Mantises have been part of human culture, art, and myth since ancient times. 

In this conversation, Nayt addressed questions about mantises, including: How long do they live? What do they eat? What's sexual cannibalism? Can they fly? Are they dangerous to humans? How smart are they? Do they make good pets? Is it illegal to kill one? 

This program is available to watch on Facebook, on YouTube, and on the OCPL website's LWB Livestream page.  

Lunch With Books logo

"Lunch With Books" is the library’s flagship program for adult patrons. These lunchtime programs feature authors, poets, musicians, historians, and more every Tuesday at noon. Bring lunch (to your computer), feed your brain!

Lunch With Books starts at noon on Tuesdays in the Library Auditorium on our LWB Livestream Feed starts at noon on Tuesdays on Facebook and YouTube.

Subscribe to the Lunch With Books Youtube channel or like us on the Lunch With Books Facebook page or to receive notifications of our upcoming LWB broadcasts. To receive emails about our upcoming programs, visit our News page, click the "Subscribe" button to sign-up for our news blasts or download our free OCPL Connect app from your smartphone's app store. 

Like Lunch With Books on Facebook to keep up with all the latest LWB news and events!Subscribe to our Lunch With Books YouTube Channel

Kids books about mantises and other interesting insects. Juvenile collections are great for kids, but you don't have to be a child to learn from them. TV quiz show Jeopardy! champion James Holzhauer, whom the Washington Post called “undeniably the most dynamic, unstoppable force in the show’s modern 35-year history,” used a secret weapon—children’s books—to become a game-show millionaire. Holzhauer told the New York Times that reading kids’ books was part of his Jeopardy! strategy, and said the library’s children’s section is the place to go for books “tailored to make things interesting for uninterested readers.” Read more...

Mantis/Insect books at the Library 

Mantis Books available at the Library

Ebooks available through Hoopla

Mantis and insect related ebooks available through Hoopla


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